Position Title: Director
Classification: EL2
Position Number: 6031
Tenure: Ongoing
Duration: Permanent
Section: International Policy & Cooperation
Group: Policy and Governance
Division: Policy and Corporate
Location: ACT
Immediate Supervisor: Assistant General Manager
Security Classification: NEGATIVE VETTING 1

Job description / Context of the role

IP Australia is seeking an experienced leader to manage its International Policy & Cooperation section (IP&C). This section leads on setting and pursuing Australia’s international IP position directly through multiple international fora and in consultation with other government departments. The section also manages cooperation activities and international relations with Intellectual Property offices around the world. This is a high-profile role, with regular exposure to senior executives, and acts as an advisor to the Director General on IP Australia's international positions.

The director of IP&C manages a dynamic team of 12 staff members, including the IP Counsellor based in Beijing, and covers a broad remit. IP Australia has policy responsibility for intellectual property matters, ranging across patents, trade marks, design rights, plant breeder's rights, geographical indications and domain names.

The section leads on developing policy positions, particularly in the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) where the section is directly responsible for pursuing Australia's interests and negotiating in relevant Committees and Working Groups. The section further supports IP Australia’s involvement in other international fora, including: the World Trade Organisation (WTO), the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC), the World Health Organisation (WHO) and provides input to trade agreements.

The section also leads on cooperation activities between IP offices. This includes the management of international relationships through both memorandums of understanding and treaties, active engagement with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and the governance of IP related development initiatives.

This is a security assessed position, requiring security clearance at the negative vetting 1 level. This can be organised by IP Australia, but the successful candidate must be able to complete the vetting successfully. 

Job Specific duties

  • Manage a team and ensure high quality outputs including that employees maintain a high level of professional and technical expertise.
  • Provide strategic advice, problem solving and issues management for internal and external stakeholders in relation to complex and potentially controversial matters.
  • Contribute to the strategic planning of agency-wide objectives. Set strategic direction, develop long-term plans and implement operational strategies aimed at achieving specific agency objectives within a discipline or area of responsibility.
  • Apply and maintain an extensive understanding of the role and responsibilities of the agency, incorporating a comprehensive understanding of the agency’s impact on the wider political and community context in which it operates.
  • Work with a high level of autonomy under broad direction with a concurrent need to resolve issues and deliver quality outcomes.
  • Undertake complex analysis and interpretation and apply significant judgement in choosing a course of action to manage highly complex and/or sensitive issues.
  • Represent and negotiate on behalf of the agency to advance the agency’s interests in cross-agency, inter-jurisdictional, international and other forums.
  • Develop and manage key strategic relationships with a broad range of stakeholders, promoting the agency’s business objectives.
  • Coordinate and assume responsibility for complex or sensitive projects and policy issues that have strategic, political and/or operational significance.
  • Demonstrate attitudes and behaviours responsive to workplace change (including participate in and encourage others to participate in change and contribute to successful outcomes).
  • Improve organisational performance through effective engagement with and management of risk within relevant sphere of influence.
  • Establishe clear expectations and creates an environment to achieve stated goals and objectives, takes ownership and honours commitments.
  • Maintain an understanding of their/worker responsibilities under the Work Health & Safety Act 2011 (WHS Act) and a commitment to promoting a healthy and safe workplace.

Job Specific Capabilities

  • Experience managing a team in a high-pressure environment.
  • Experience with international relations, through cooperation activities, negotiation of agreements and/or engagement activities at a senior level.

Eligibility qualifications / Knowledge required

  • Knowledge of the IP System and the international IP landscape.
  • This is a security assessed position, requiring security clearance at the negative vetting 1 level. This can be organised by IP Australia, but the successful candidate must be able to complete the vetting successfully.

Application Requirements

To apply for this position candidates are asked to:

  • Prepare a two-page statement outlining their skills and experience in relation to the selection criteria and the role requirements.
  • Provide a current CV, including two referees that can be contacted. 

Applications must be submitted through the IP Australia Web Recruitment system (ESS).

Please note: you MUST be an Australian Citizen to be engaged in the APS and to meet IP Australia’s security clearance requirements.

Selection Criteria

The selection criteria below are a guide for developing your response to the specific duties and job description. They do not have to be addressed individually, but incorporate the core competencies expected of the successful applicant.

  • Supports strategic direction
  • Achieves results
  • Develops and maintains productive working relationships
  • Demonstrates drive and integrity
  • Communicates with influence

Contact officer

For further information pertaining to this job please contact Ben Mitra-Kahn on 02 6283 2291, 0478 319 452 or benjamin.mitra-kahn@ipaustralia.gov.au

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Working in IP Australia

Australia’s Intellectual property (IP) rights system supports innovation, investment and international competitiveness. IP Australia administers Australia’s IP rights system, specifically patents, trade marks, designs and plant breeder’s rights. IP Australia also undertakes programs to educate and promote an awareness of intellectual property (IP), provides IP policy input to Government, develops legislation to support the IP system and contributes to bilateral and multilateral negotiations to improve IP protection internationally.

IP Australia strives to deliver robust IP rights efficiently, satisfy our customers in terms of timeliness and value for money and be recognised as one of the leading IP offices in the world for the quality (including accuracy and consistency) of the IP rights we grant. IP Australia is committed to external certification of our Quality Management System which involves applying ISO 9001:2008 to key business processes and to environmental management through ISO14001 certification within the agency.

All IP Australia staff contribute to the achievement of organisational outcomes and the overall management of IP Australia by assisting, as appropriate, the Commissioner of Patents and the Registrars of Trade Marks and Designs and Plant Breeder’s Rights, and their deputies (where relevant), to perform statutory functions, and where appropriate, exercise relevant delegations.

IP Australia recognises the importance of employees balancing their work and personal lives by offering staff access to an ongoing series of health and wellbeing programs, flexible work-life policies and a range of professional development programs. IP Australia is a breastfeeding friendly workplace.

The IP Australia office in Canberra provides high quality accommodation and facilities. These include: an on-site café, conference, meeting and training rooms; limited on-site parking for cars and motor cycles available on a rotational basis; the provision of undercover bicycle racks; excellent shower/change facilities for staff choosing to walk or ride to work; and the advantage of all staff being co-located in the one building.

Please note: All IP Australia positions are subject to an ENTRY ONLY pre-employment check unless a higher security clearance has been identified. Other pre-employment checks may also apply.


Job documentation updated and endorsed for use: 
Monday, July 17, 2017